Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Montana’s junior U.S. Senator, Steve Daines, was one of the 47 senators who signed an open letter to Iran informing them that any agreement about nuclear weapons made by President Barack Obama would have to approved by Congress.
The 47 senators were all Republicans, so that basically tells us it was a political move – a “gotcha” move because of their hatred for Obama. On March 10, I wrote about this subject and said sending the letter was not the right thing to do. I also added that it’s important when we (the United States) are in diplomatic negotiations with other countries that we present a united front.
In today’s Billings Gazette, the editorial board has decided that “Daines was wrong on Iran letter” and they were pretty blunt about the reasons why.
One key paragraph kind of says it all:
His participation in this half-baked scheme doesn’t just make him look foolish; it has a destabilizing effect on the world and undermines U.S. credibility. In other words, he’s done just the opposite of what should be expected from our leaders: His actions make the world less safe, not more.
The Gazette editorial board did not stop there. They called Daines signing the letter a “rookie mistake.” They also pointed out that Senator Bob Corker, the Republican chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee did not think it was an appropriate role for the senators and the Gazette said that Daines should “know better.”
We have to remember that Daines was Montana’s U.S. Representative for two years and his first term as a U.S. Senator started in January 2015. Daines spent most of his two years as Montana’s lone Representative campaigning for U.S. Senate, so his experience in Washington, D.C., is almost zilch.
We can only hope that Daines will be more careful in the future. I would suggest that when one of his legislative assistants shoves a letter in front of him to sign, he reads it and gives it some thought.
By the way, it’s good to see a major newspaper in Montana hold politicians accountable (even if it’s a few days late) instead of sitting back and letting Montana bloggers do their work for them.